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University of North Carolina Wilmington Advancement and University Relations Records

 Record Group
Identifier: UA-RG-10

Scope and Contents

The University of North Carolina Wilmington Advancement and University Relations Records contain information about efforts to build relationships to promote the institution and advance excellence in higher education. Wilmington College records, which pre-date the university's joining the University of North Carolina System of public higher education in 1969, include information about the Friends of Wilmington College and the Wilmington College Foundation. These fundraising organizations were significant to the college's early development. University Advancement records include Alumni Association material, Vice Chancellors' correspondence, and planning materials for homecoming and other special events. As the public relations department of the university, the University Relations series includes press releases, news clippings, university publications, and material documenting promotional activities such as anniversary celebrations. Scrapbooks are unique pieces in the collection, containing newspaper clippings about Wilmington College and the University of North Carolina Wilmington, as well as photographs, invitations, and other mementos.


  • Creation: 1947-2023


Conditions Governing Access

There are no access restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

The content described is copyrighted and presented courtesy of the University of North Carolina Wilmington Randall Library. This material may be used for educational and scholarship purposes provided: a) proper attribution accompanies any use of the content; b) the use, copy, republication, display, and/or distribution is not for commercial purposes; and c) you may not alter, add to, change, modify, or revise the subject content.

Biographical / Historical

Wilmington College opened in 1947, under the authority of the New Hanover County Board of Education. Financial support came from a county-wide tax levy voted by the citizens in addition to tuition fees. The principal of New Hanover High School, Thomas T. Hamilton, simultaneously served as first college president. New Hanover High School was the first location of Wilmington College. In 1948, Wilmington College acquired space for administrative offices in the Isaac Bear building, a former elementary school. Dr. William Madison Randall, dean 1952-1958 then President 1958-1969, had the goal of expanding the institution into a major player in higher education.An early priority was to obtain land where Wilmington College could expand in the future requiring significant fund raising efforts.

Wilmington College then moved to a new campus on College Road in 1961 and became a four-year liberal arts school. The college became part of the University of North Carolina sytem in 1969. Fundraising for new buildings such as the library was needed. With growth came the need for the creation of the Division of University Advancement, formerly the Development Office. The Office of University Relations grew out of a need for a central university spokesperson to interact with the media and the public.

Leaders and Timeline for University Relations:

1969-1971 David E. Warner, Jr. (Gwen Croom, admin)

Department not listed in catalog 1971-1982

1982-1983 Mimi Cunningham – Public Information Officer

1983-1984 – position not listed

1987-1997 Mary W. Cunningham Director of University Relations, under Advancement

1997- 1999 Mimi Cunningham Director of University Relations

1999- 2004 Mimi Cunningham Asst. Vice Chancellor for University Relations, stops being under Advancement

2004- 2006 Mimi Cunningham Asst to Chancellor for University Relations

2006-position not listed

2007–2012 Office is renamed Marketing and Communications

2012-2015 Office returns to its previous name, "University Relations"

The leaders of University Advancement:

1975-1982 Tyrone Rowell (director of development, under supporting svcs)

1982-1985 M. Tyrone Rowell (director of development svcs, under Business Affairs.)

1985-1987 Tyrone Rowell (director of development services under supporting services)

Department of University Advancement appears in 1987-1988

1987-1991 F. Douglas Moore Vice Chancellor

1991-1992 M. Tyrone Rowell Interim

1992-1997 William G. Anlyan Vice Chancellor

1997- 1999 M. Tyrone Rowell Interim

1999-2003 W. Patton McDowell Interim V.C. (V.C. in 2000-2001)

2003-2013 Mary M. Gornto

2013- Edwin T. Stuart


33.75 Linear Feet (27 records center boxes, 27 scrapbooks, 9 oversize folders, and 1 small box/object)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged by topical series. Within series, files are arranged alphabetically.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Nina Herzog in Fall, 2023.

University of North Carolina Wilmington Advancement and University Relations Records
Nina Herzog and Adina Riggins
2024 January
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives Repository